Question

Does the rash found in the acute phase of HIV infection go away in 3-4 days or does it generally last longer than that? Is it rare for rash to be the only symptom? Thanks for your time.

Answer

The rash associated with the "acute phase" of HIV, or primary HIV infection can last for hours to days. My experience is that it is rarely more than a week. Most people with primary infection have more than a rash but the symptoms during this stage of disease can be quite variable. In general I recommend to people that if they are concerned about a potential recent exposure to HIV and have anyone of a variety of unexplained symptoms they should seek out the attention of a provider who can evaluate them for the many causes of the specific symptoms, including primary HIV infection if appropriate. It is important to know that there are many other things that can cause a rash so one really does need a thorough evaluation.

Best, Eric